The Steeplechase, every Aiken socialite’s favorite event of the year, excluding the Lobster Races of course.. Everyone dresses their best: ladies in sundresses and big sometimes outlandish hats, the men in bright colored pants and bowties. The people gather together in tents to eat food,  and get drunk. Oh. And watch the horses race of course… That is what it’s all about.

Some people really do watch the race. Aiken is a town big on horses and lots of people care. I don’t really pay attention to the horses, unless of course I have bet a quarter (run MuchoMacho , run!). I go to watch the people get drunk and wear their funny outfits- this year there was a man dressed like the easter bunny. I also go to hang out with friends, eat delcious food, and to see 30,000 people gather together on a spring day. I’ll admit that another reason I go (a very small reason and a vain one) is so that those 30,000 people can see me looking cute.

When I was a little kid, my family and I would go to the steeplechase. My dad would pull me around in a red wagon. So the steeplechase has some sentimental value as well.

Steeplechase isn’t quite as fun as it used to be though. I especially realized it this year. It was Autumn’s first time and she wasn’t too impressed.. I’m kind of used to seeing people dressed up and drunk- it’s basically college football tailgating. All the people and hub-bub used to be much more exciting when it was a new experience. Plus I always leave steeplechase with a killer sunburn.. But even in my hot, sunburnt, and non-alcoholed state- I always manage to have lots of fun with friends.

And let’s face it. I’ll probably cough up the 25 bucks to go again next year.

Some pictures of steeplechases over the years:


2010- the year we thought we’d look cool if we wore shorts instead of dresses like everyone else.- my 14 year old self was so excited that  year when some drunk dude told me “nicccee sshortss”.
Abbie, Katelyn, and Chaela (left to right)



2010- Steeplechase selfie!
Katelyn, Chaela, Ruthie, Abbie (left to right)


2012- Abbie and me. I’m showing off my betting quarter!


2012- Daniel, Vilai, Ruthie (me), Katelyn
We are so cool. Well actually more like hot and sweaty…


2014 (last saturday!)- Autumn, Rachel, me, Chaela. Do you like the hat my Daddy bought me?



The years of 2011 and 2013 it rained. Silly spring showers!


3 thoughts on “Steeplechase

  1. I always enjoyed the races – I started attending when I was 16 and kept it up. Took awhile for me to realize it much more enjoyable for me than most because we attended in the members enclosure and the Ascot Bar at Racecourse Rd.

    Loved dressing up for the different events of the season and truly enjoyed the sponsored events as we usually went with BMW or Hilton for things like the Melbourne Cup (even though it was held in Melbourne there were races all round the country that day but everyone stopped to watch the big one on the screens. It was handy re betting since we had our own little booths and didn’t have fight it our on the concourse.

    They say the whole country stops at 2.10 for the cup – even school kids watch it in the classrooms and in Melbourne it’s a public holiday. I do miss it as the races further North don’t have the same feel for me and I certainly wouldn’t dress they way we did in the past as it would be completely outlandish for the less formal courses up here. I enjoy the party atmosphere but also love going down to the enclosure to see the horses prior to the races – some are just magnificent.


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